Meet the 2012 Design Team: Amanda Kremer

Get to know Amanda Kremer…

Your First & Last Name: Amanda Kremer
Where you live: Covington, WA, USA

Most commonly used username in the scrapbooking word: Scrappnbee
Facebook ID: Amanda (Lucey) Kremer

Please tell us a little about yourself, your family, your background…I am a married mother of three (two boys and a girl).  I am a Taurus.  I am horribly allergic to roses, so of course that is the only thing that totally thrives in my garden.  My house will never be tidy (see sentence one).  Currently, I am what they call a SAHM (Stay-At-Home Mom), except that I never am!  Until my youngest started kindergarten, I worked, but gave it up to “be there” for the kids.  In about two weeks, I was going crazy (the cat is not the stimulating conversationalist I thought that she would be).  So now I volunteer somewhere almost every day (my favorite being my kids’ classes… I even got to dissect four periods’ worth of frogs with the middle school last year!).  I scrap because for the first 12 years of our marriage, my fabulous spouse was active duty in the US Navy and deployed for six months at a time.  Now, he is a civilian and Navy Reservist and still travels a lot… like Alaska Airlines Gold MVP a lot.  The pages of my scrapbooks capture some of those memories that he might have missed… or of which he actually got to be a part.  Plus, I just like being crafty!

How did you become a scrapbooker or memory-keeper? I made my first scrapbook to remember my uncle’s wedding and going to Walt Disney World when I was in kindergarten.  My mom “made” us make them for every important vacation.  In college, I found myself collecting pictures and memorabilia to remember important things, but it was not the scrapbooking of my youth.  Then, my oldest child was born.  Three weeks later, my husband left on his submarine for a six-month deployment.  I returned to my scrapbooking roots as I captured my new family’s moments to share with him upon his return.  A scrapbooker was reborn!

How would you describe your scrapbooking style? I am a paper scrapbooker.  Almost every layout that I create is a two-page, multiple-photo layout. My style is relatively simple, but it does evolve from time to time (My husband can look at a layout and go… yup, that was her button phase). I do layer more now, and I do incorporate more embellishments than in the past, but I doubt I will ever be one of those over-the-top scrapbookers.

When do you scrapbook? How much time do you spend on this activity during a typical week? I usually scrapbook after the kids go to bed, but I do try to carve out at least an hour or two during the day, now that the kids are in school, to scrapbook.  I guess that it depends on the week and how many things we are juggling as a family.  Typically, rather than hours, I go by layouts.  I usually complete 1-2 layouts a week… plus a few cards.

What is your favorite way to capture the journaling part of your scrapbooking? I hand-write almost all of my journaling.

What story from the past do you most wish had been documented so you and/or your family could enjoy it now? After my second child was born, my scrapbooking slowed down.  When he was six months old, we went to Disney World in Florida and visited my Nana for the last time before she passed away.  A few months later, we moved, and our computer with the digital un-scrapped photos was stolen out of the moving truck.  The Disney memories would have been great for the kids (who swear they never went as they were 4 years and 6 months), but the pictures of them with my grandparents would mean so much to me.

What is your favorite source of scrapbooking or design inspiration? I get a lot of inspiration from the Internet.  There are tons of fabulous scrapbook blogs and challenge sites out there.  If my mojo is in a rut, I just go to a couple of challenge sites and find one that speaks to me.  Some have an inspirational picture, or sketch, or color scheme.  I am competitive by nature and picking up a challenge works for me.

What is your favorite part of scrapbooking/memory-keeping? It is the creative process of transforming pictures into a story or memory that I am proud to share.  Some layouts take hours to get just right, while others take just a few minutes.  However, it is always a chance to let the creative me out and shine!

What do you find the most challenging about scrapbooking/memory-keeping? Figuring what to scrap and what pictures just to store.  I have essentially four story lines (each of my three kids and the family as a whole).  Which moments are more important? If I have to pick roughly 52 moments to scrap, what would they be? …and did I represent all four stories equally in the selection process?

How has your scrapbooking changed since you first started? (or has it?) Absolutely! I originally scrapped one-page layouts and two-page layouts, but I kept getting that one odd one page with a blank.  Also, I mostly used plain cardstock and stamps and eyelets (remember eyelets?).  Now, I could not live without my patterned papers, mists, paints, and other embellishments.

Please share one piece of advice on how to capture everyday real life memories for others new to scrapbooking and/or memory-keeping… I keep an inexpensive digital camera in my purse at all times to catch that surprise memory, including the pouts and tantrum ones.  I store all those photos in a yearly folder on the computer, with sub-folders by date and event, to make it easy to find or remember when I go back to it.  Also, if you do not have time to scrap a layout today, write up a small note to yourself about the event in a word document and save it in the same folder on your computer as the photos.  Then when you revisit it, that tiny detail that makes the difference will not be lost.

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